Ladies, it’s about time for a little girl talk. Usually my “time of the month” is all it takes to curl up chin-high in my favorite blanket and chow down on my fav Tom & Jerry’s Cherry Garcia ice cream straight out of the container. And most of the time, I’ll use it as an excuse to skip my workouts all together!
But after doing a little research, I actually want to workout on my period now (gasp). Yes, it’s crazy, but keep reading and you just might want to join me!
Why Should I Workout on My Period?
If you’re a little nervous to workout on your period, I get it. Irritability, cramps, and discomfort aren’t exactly the equation for perfect workout conditions. However, working out on your period has no negative health risks, and can even help you feel better. Check out some great benefits of exercise during your period below.
Combat Mood Swings
When you exercise, your body releases natural chemicals called endorphins. Endorphins interact with receptors in the brain to reduce pain and give you a boost of positivity.
Relieve Menstrual Cramps
Exercise increases circulation and decreases stress and anxiety- both of which help to reduce menstrual cramps.
Regulate Irregular Periods
If you have an irregular period, regular exercise can help to get your menstrual cycle back on track.
Reduce Headaches and Fatigue
Nothing’s worse than those day-long headaches you just can’t shake- you just don’t feel yourself! Luckily, the endorphins from exercise will reduce the pain of your headache, and leave you feeling more cheery and energetic when your workout is over.
That being said, your body will need more rest when on your period, so if you are working out, make sure to take the time to rest and relax, as well as get some good shut-eye.
Serious Strength Gains
A study released in 2016 from Umea University in Sweden, revealed that resistance training during the first two weeks of your cycle (beginning on the first day of your period) can result in greater power and strength gains, as well as a greater increase in lean muscle mass than any other time of the month.
Not to say that you shouldn’t train during other times of the month as well, but this alone is enough justification for getting a workout in when you’re on your period and you don’t really want to, right?
What Type of Exercise Should I Do?
Luckily, any type of exercise during your period will yield benefits! So do what you like most, and what fits into your training plan.
For many women, exercising during their period can be uncomfortable. If that’s you, start with something easy like light cardio or yoga.
It’s all up to you! Your top priority should be taking care of yourself. If you just can’t handle it, then that’s okay too, don’t be too hard on yourself. Do what you’re comfortable with and what makes you feel best.